There’s a new leak floating around, originally from 4chan, that purports to be laying out Sony’s grand plan for their not-MCU Spider-Verse that was started by Venom and recently expanded to Morbius. The current rights situation is quite literally that Sony has to make a Spider-Man universe movie every few years, lest the rights revert back to Marvel, which they obviously don’t want, and the only way to get this to stop is likely Disney buying Sony Pictures outright. I mean, never say never, but for now, we are getting an increasingly weird series of Spider-Verse movies as a result.
You can read the grand leak here, but it’s a mix of known news that’s already announced and a bunch of actors and actresses Sony “wants” for various roles. It kind of reads like a “so hot right now” who’s who of young actors, and whether all these projects and these “dream” castings come to life is anyone’s guess. But it does come to the same conclusion that has seemed obvious to most people for a while now, that Sony is trying to assemble it’s own Spider-Man based universe with its own Sinister Six, to fight their own version of Spider-Man, whoever that may be, an existing one, or a new one.
Here’s the movie and cast breakdown:
Kraven the Hunter starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Russell Crowe, Ariana DeBose, Fred Hechinger, Christopher Abbott and Alessandro Nivola. All of these castings have been confirmed.
Madame Webb starring Dakota Johnson and Sydney Sweeney (confirmed). Vera Farmiga allegedly in final talks for Cassandra Webb. Sony “wants” Jena Ortega and Scott Eastwood.
Venom 3 will have Tom Hardy and Michelle Williams return (confirmed) with Andy Serkis directing. Toxin becomes a new ally vigilante that joins with Venom to hunt Xenophage.
Spider-Woman directed by Olivia Wilde (confirmed). Sony wants Ana de Armas as Jessica Drew and Rebecca Ferguson to play the villain.
Silver Sable where Sony wants Killing Eve’s Jodie Comer as the star.
Nightwatch where Sony wants Bridgerton’s Regé -Jean Page as the star.
The grand plan is a Sinister Six Avengers-style crossover that at the very least will star Venom, Vulture, Morbius and some of these others to fight Spider-Man. They want that Spider-Man to be Holland’s Spider-Man, but it remains unclear if they’re going to work that out with Disney and Marvel. The leak says they approached Andrew Garfield to return to his old Peter Parker role but he said no (given his recent hugely prestigious and successful movie projects, this tracks), and they may “retire” him and cast a new Spider-Man in his same universe for this. Yeah, a bit confusing.
So, is this plausible? I mean, half of this is confirmed, and the other half is mostly “Sony wants high profile stars to lead their other random Spider-Verse character movies.” If Sony has publicly committed to Kraven and Madame Webb movies already, things like Silver Sable and Nightwatch certainly seem at least believable.
The fact is, Sony is only three movies into this experiment. Both Venoms have been a hit, among audiences at least. Morbius was thrashed by reviews but embraced at least as a meme by fans. It’s done $148 million worldwide which is a far cry from Venom numbers. It’s hard to know what something like a Kraven the Hunter movie is going to do, and I’d argue Aaron Taylor-Johnson is kind of a miscast if Sony is pursuing buzzed-about stars for these movies. Dakota Johnson and Sydney Sweeney for Madame Webb is another story, however.
Who knows how this will go. Obviously Sony is never going to hit MCU heights with these movies, but will they ever make one critics actually love? That remains to be seen, but pleasing audiences remains the most important thing.